In Transition.

March 25, 2014 at 1:46 pm | Posted in And I ran (I ran so far away), Choosing Happiness., Infertility, Mindful., Moving On., The End of Trying | 5 Comments

Ugh, you guys. I have 5 different posts sitting in my drafts folder right now.  I wish I could just hit “publish” but I hate how wandery and rambling they are.

It’s so hard to collect myself to write about anything of substance lately.

I was thinking about that on the way into my client engagement today.

(It’s funny – as much as I loathe commuting, I do enjoy the quiet time. Lucky is an incessant talker, a monologuer. Often at the end of a long day, or a weekend, he talks so much that my ears ring when he’s asleep. Quiet time is a rarity in my world these days.)

Anyway, so on my way into Boston this morning, I was thinking about how hard it is to publish any of my words right now. I was thinking about how I didn’t want to put them into the computer, how I couldn’t really find a POINT to it all, how there was a lot to say but most of it was ephemeral stuff that didn’t really have much meat to the subject.

It’s because I’m in the middle of… well… transition.

Ending treatments – for real this time – has opened up a whole new realm of possibilities for my life.

You see, before now, I was operating my life on the assumption that if I worked really hard, I’d get what I want. It just took perseverance and hard work and dedication. I’ve spent YEARS working hard on things I’m not good at – getting my MBA, then my Masters in Accounting, then working as an auditor and accountant, even though a professor told me I didn’t have the detail orientation to make a good accountant.

Then we were infertile.

And though I recognize that we MIGHT get pregnant and have another baby if we keep going through IVF, the cost of all that Fail is already too high. I’m not sure my marriage or my own self-esteem can handle it.

But the thing is?

Walking away from treatments has made me look at other things in my life differently.

Like marathoning, for example. I don’t need to run marathons to be a legit runner. I don’t need to run marathons to love running. I don’t need to run marathons – I should run marathons only because I want to. And I kind of don’t want to run marathons anymore. After this training cycle, I’m going to take a break from marathons and focus on shorter distance races and trail runs.

It’s like the first time I got glasses. After months of squinting at my friends as they walked down the hall towards me, all of a sudden everything was in sharp relief. I could see each individual leaf on every tree, for goodness sake. And I’m looking at all the facets of my life with this new set of glasses.

What if I don’t turn everything into work?

Yes, that means my hobbies, but it can also apply to my marriage. I have an ugly habit of retreating into anger, believing myself justified in being pissed off at my spouse for something he has or hasn’t done. What happens if I walk away from that anger?

And it applies to my horrid body image, too. What happens if I continue to show my belly in hot yoga? What happens if I accept that I am 5lbs heavier than I was last fall?

So that’s why I haven’t written.

Because I want to tell you how infertility has changed my marriage, my parenting, my body image. I want to tell you about how challenging it’s been in some ways to walk away, and how freeing in so many other ways. I want to share with you how ugly I’ve been with Charlie lately and how we live in this Pattern as a married couple that makes us both miserable. How sometimes I wish I could just run away and start all over again – just moments after being flooded with the intensity of feeling incredibly, humbly, weepingly grateful for my family.

It’s changing, and changeable. It’s not all miserable, but it’s not all happy. And if I write them down in words, they’ll be different tomorrow, and I worry about putting this all on the page and then writing a post which essentially changes everything up.

But it’s where I am right now. In the middle of transition. I don’t really know which end is up. But I’m starting to think that maybe I have a lot more control over my choices and emotional state than I ever thought possible.

Is it possible to CHOOSE happiness? To choose acceptance over anger? To choose to be vulnerable even though it scares the shit out of you and you want to run away and protect yourself?

I don’t know for sure, but I’m starting to think that maybe the answer is yes.

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5 Comments »

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  1. This is a really powerful post. These kinds of realizations can be life changing.

    For me, I’m realizing that even if I have everything I want, I may have to work at happiness in very deliberate ways. I’m actually revisiting that book about mindful self-compassion that you recommended a while ago, trying to stop the incessant negative talk about how my body looks and what I’m able to accomplish on a daily basis, along with how bad of a mother, teacher and wife I am. It has so many good reminders and I’m trying to be aware and accepting of the presence of my thoughts without buying into them but it’s hard. So hard. I am very persuasive. 😉

  2. Oh, and I meant to say; I hope you eventually press publish on those posts. Even if they are a bit rambly. Rambly’s not bad, at least it doesn’t have to be. It’s all in your perspective. 😉

  3. I’ve recently become friends with a mom at preschool who also has IVF twins (same clinic, same doctor for ER and ET). We’ve talked about how IF has affected our marriage and our parenting, years after childbirth — not in the most positive way. I think the withdrawal and grudge holding of IF-related depression can carry over and be transferred to a spouse. It’s really hard to talk about it.

  4. I like rambling posts- they give me some insight into the writer’s brain. Publish away!

    I think it is possible to choose happiness, but it takes time. For about a year after we stopped trying, I really felt at loose ends- which was just so foreign to me! I had always had goals- things I was working toward, and hoping to accomplish. For seven years, that was all about building my family. When that was gone, I had NO IDEA who I was, and I felt so lost. I threw myself into running and making changes in my job, trying to fill that void, but nothing worked. It has only been in the last month or so that I have really felt peaceful, and completely ok with the idea that happiness doesn’t come from chasing something. I think it was important for me to go through the process of being bitter and angry and sad and shocked in order to put it all to rest.

    It sounds to me like you are in a really good place, actually. I completely understand the bipolar nature of how you’re feeling right now- grateful one minute, and angry the next. I went through it, too. If you’re at all like me (and I’m pretty sure we are similar!), you seem to be working through all of this in a normal way. You will get there eventually. I promise. xoxo

  5. I hope that as you transition you find you way to yes. Yes it is possible to choose. It is hard to do and requires so much introspection and perspective, both of which you have. And, sometimes it even requires the help of anti-depressants to at least level set ones brain chemistry so that the choice IS possible.


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